I was out on Saturday morning for a nice change as I now work most weekends & I managed to creep into a new highseat that seperates a field of new fodder beat shoots & another of new barley shoots, both of the crops being about 2 inches high I guess.
The ground in question is on the northern edge of the New Forest & had massive problems with big Fallow herds hitting the crops last spring before I took over the ground in August.
We have taken a good number of Does off during the winter & did feel that we were making good progress ready for the spring growth-as the deer had been showing in far lower numbers at the back end of the winter.
After glassing the field in front to confirm there were no deer out & got out the old flask for a nice early morning cuppa & as the light came up & thought I would just sweep the front field once again with the bins only to see 100+ assorted fallow now out in front & about 20/30 more in the field behind me.
I managed to take 2 smaller juvinile prickets from the front field as they moved into range & then had the job to recover them without causing yet more crop damage.
I was just shocked by the numbers once again & worried about how many there will be when there are this years youngsters with them soon also.
Over Sun/Mon Ian that works for me managed to take a further 6 prickets form the same area & again saw growing numbers getting out on the spring growth.
Then this morning I was out at 4.30am in great conditions ready to fill my boots & creep into the same seat & not a single deer showed up!
I guess we have done the task of keeping them off the growth for the moment-but I am sure it will only take a day or two of rest & they will be back in larger numbers yet again & all this is before the Maize is drilled- which will pull even larger numbers in off the New Forest!